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Dwarf Burford Holly

Ilex cornuta 'Burfordii Nana'

Dwarf Burford Holly


This dense evergreen shrub has small, glossy, dark green leaves, each with a single terminal spine. The somewhat-showy clusters of fragrant, springtime, white flowers are followed in the fall and winter by some bright red berries. However, the berry display is mostly inferior to the Dwarf Burford Holly. The plants are self-fertile, fruiting even if planted alone.

Use and Management

The shrub will reach a height of 15 feet or more, despite its compact growth habit. If left unclipped, a dense, oval silhouette develops, making it well suited as a screen. Plant three to four feet apart to form a hedge, farther apart in a shrub border. One yearly pruning can easily keep this plant in bounds in most landscape settings, unless it is clipped into a formal hedge. It shears fairly well, but will thin toward the base, especially if not located in full sun. Clip the hedge so it is wider at the bottom than at the top to allow maximum light penetration to bottom foliage. This will help keep the hedge full to the ground.

Grows best in rich, well drained, slightly acid, and does well in full sun or part shade. The plant is very drought tolerant, requiring little, if any, irrigation once established in the landscape.

Can be bothered by scale and aphids.


    Instant Landscape
  • Plant 24” OC for an instant landscape with a good budget.
  • Spec 3, 5 or 7 gal containers.
  • Try to spec 3’s because 5 gal plants are not as readily available as 5’s.
  • 7 gal are specified when trying to match existing shrubs and/or using as a specimen plant.

    Normal or budget Landscape
  • Plant 30” – 36” OC for budget landscapes.
  • Use 1 gal or 3 gal containers.

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